June 16th, 2008

Summer Eats

Dani writes:

A while back you did a “your turn” for quick recipes. There were a lot of good recipes that came from that, and I’m wondering if you would consider hosting a “your turn” for recipes to cook on those sultry hot summer days when you can’t stand to stand over a hot stove, and can’t bear the thought of firing up a grill and enduring 100 degree heat outside while standing next to a 500 degree BBQ. After this heat snap, I’ve about exhausted my own supply of quick fix summer dishes that don’t really require heating up the kitchen, and I’d love to see what other families do.

Here’s mine: On a day when you know it is going to be crazy-hot, marinate chicken breasts in your favorite salad dressing for at least an hour — really any salad dressing will do. Then, in the morning, grill the chicken, let cool, and store in the refrigerator. At dinnertime, slice chicken in strips, and serve with raw vegetables (baby carrots, cut peppers, cucumbers, cherry tomatoes) and dip. If someone insists upon having a grain, put the cold chicken between slices of bread and make it a sandwich.

On a day where I fail to plan ahead, fruit, yogurt, and deli meat sandwiches also make a popular, no-cook dinner. What about you? What do you “cook” when it gets hot?

***UPDATED to add the link to the original “easy meals” post.

[tags]summer cooking, no-cook dinners, meal planning[/tags]

34 comments to Summer Eats

  • Monica

    Curry tuna salad (well, really curry canned pink salmon salad) is one of our family’s favorites. I put tuna, mayo (fake mayo, since we have egg allergies in the family), and curry in a bowl and mix them up. Then I add some combination of chopped apple (I like Granny Smith best), carrots, celery, and anything else that catches my eye. The flavors are best when you let it sit for a while, but it can be made just before serving, too. This can be served with bread, tortillas, tortilla chips, crackers.

    We also do salad nicoise, which is basically tuna (or pink salmon) with olives, steamed green beans, capers, olive oil and lemon juice. I usually do this one as a wrap with lettuce.

    Also, hummus wraps or black bean wraps make great quick, cold dinners.

  • Denise

    Corn salad – lost the actual recipe but basically it’s defrosted bag corn, mayonnaise and seasonings – I add black beans, sundried tomatoes, crumbled blue cheese, whatever sounds good and we have – could be a main course with chopped chicken breast and beans for protein – fruit, bread or nachos on the side and it is a meal

    even though we often think of crock pots as winter fare, I use mine in the summer to avoid the heat of the stove/oven

    I do lots of chopped salads. I chop (I just prefer the chopped texture and it is easier for little ones to eat) whatever veggies and lettuce I have on hand and add a handful of nuts or some beans or cold meat and cheese for protein and substance. Toss with good extra virgin olive oil, strong vinegar and seasonings and yum!

  • Maurisa

    I serve ice cold water melon with almost every meal, everyone finds that refreshing. We also like chipotle crab salad. I mix mayo, lime juice, minced red onion, minced celery, minced garlic, minced cilantro and a pinch of chipotle chili pepper and then toss with lump or shredded crab meat. This can be served on buns, crackers, lettuce leaves, wrap bread, english muffins etc.

  • Two of my dearest mommy friends and I were just talking about this! And then the newest Faith&Family arrived in my mailbox with summer-friendly recipes! And now this post! Thank you!

    I’m not above peanut butter and jelly and potato chips if it’s really hot. We also love tuna, cherry tomatoes, and cubed cucumbers tossed with pasta and mayo (I cook the pasta earlier in the day, so I’m not over the hot stove in the hot evening). I cook hot dogs in the toaster oven — 400 degrees for 20 minutes til they darken and split — so it doesn’t heat up the kitchen. Oh — and my boys (ages 3 and 1) LOVE crackers and cheese — so a plateful of that, with some applesauce on the side, hits the spot for them (I’ve been trying to get them to eat protein too — cold chicken, pieces of sliced turkey, etc. … we’re working on that). (On cracker-and-cheese nights, my husband and I usually eat after the boys go to bed … and we’re not above ordering in if we’ve just had payday! We also like salads with cold chicken, croutons, and dressing — very easy.)

    I’m excited to read everyone else’s suggestions!

  • Jessica

    I do many salads in the summer time. A few favorites are:

    Waldorf Chicken Salad-chop up celery, apples, grapes and cooked chicken breasts add about a TBS of lemon juice and mayo to taste. It’s great with nuts (especially some smoked almonds but my daughter is allergic to nuts, so we no longer do that). I usually serve this with a box of triscuits or a bag of chips. Occasionally if I find rotisserie chickens on sale at the store I’ll get those and just pull it apart and throw that in the salad.

    Broccoli-slaw salad-two bags of broccoli slaw, asian ginger dressing and shredded chicken breasts. I add celery, chopped apple, scallions, candied ginger if I have it adds a great bit of sweet heat, and craisins. If I make it the night before or early in the morning I crumble up some raw ramen noodles in it, otherwise I just serve with fresh bread (breadmaker doesn’t give off much heat) or a bag of chips.

    Pasta salad-favorite pasta, carrots, celery, cucumbers, red pepper, black olives, a chopped thick ham slice and some mozzerella cubes. Mix with favorite italian salad dressing.

    Corn and black bean salad-1 bag of frozen corn, 2 cans black beans, chopped cucumber, chopped black olives, chopped tomato, chopped avacado. I just season it with salt, lime juice, chipotle hot sauce (my husband got me hooked on this because it has a nice smoky flavor, not just heat) and cumin. I serve this with chicken breasts shredded and seasoned with taco seasoning. You could mix it together but there are too many little ones around here who don’t like it all mixed together. serve with tortilla chips.

    Chef salad-regular green salad with some thick sliced deli meat cubed and
    tossed in. serve with croissants for a fancy meal or just bread or chips for everyday.

    Oh, one more that’s pricy but good for special days or if I can find the meat on clearance. I get a flank steak, grill it, slice it thin and serve with caesar salad and bread. Yes, the steak is expensive but when divided by 8 people, it’s much cheaper than ordering even pizza.

    We usually eat some variety of these one or two nights a week in the hot summer.

    This is a great thread and I’m hoping for some good ideas.


  • Quesadillas are great. Next time you grill chicken, make extra. Cut some up and use it in quesadillas or to top your favorite salad. If you have a pancake griddle, quesadillas cook in a flash.

    I also use cooked chicken or roast pork, shredded, in barbecue sandwiches. You can put them in tortillas or on burger buns. Just take your shredded cooked meat, add a jar of barbecue sauce, stir, and heat up in your crockpot until it’s nice and hot.

    We also like grilled cheese sandwiches (cooked on the pancake griddle). You can add sliced tomato, thinly sliced ham, or bacon (or any combo of these).

    Finally, I have some roaster ovens in various sizes that I use to slow-cook or bake many meals in the summer. I can even put these outside on the porch if I want to. They don’t heat up the kitchen like the stove does. So meat in the roaster, rice in the rice cooker, and a raw vegetable platter is an easy way for us to have a hot-day dinner.

  • My next-door neighbor in Pittsburgh has a great idea for summer cooking. She sometimes cooks in her crock pot, except she would puts the crock pot on the porch with some bricks holding the lid down. No hot kitchen!

  • We live in the desert area of Arizona, and from May through October it is really too hot to cook. I have come up with a three week menu for the summer that I rotate through. I’m finding that because it’s so hot my DH and I are not very hungry for dinner, but we are for lunch and breakfast. So I still make dinner as if the whole family is eating, although it may only be my ds. DH and I eat the leftovers for lunch or later in the evening when we get hungry. Here is my plan:

    Week 1:
    Saturday: Leftovers
    Sunday: BBQ burgers, veggie tray, chips
    Monday: Potato Salad, Roasted Store Chicken
    Tuesday: Chicken Sandwiches (using the leftover chicken), leftover potato salad
    Wednesday: Tuna Salad Pita Pockets, Homemade Mac n Cheese
    Thursday: Leftovers
    Friday: Chicken Linguini w/ Veggies, Garlic Toast

    Week 2:
    Saturday: Leftovers
    Sunday: Chicken Kabobs (Grilled) w/ Rice, Watermelon
    Monday: Chicken Caesar Salad
    Tuesday: Hoggies, Macaroni Salad
    Wednesday: Chef Salad
    Thursday: Leftovers
    Friday: Tacos

    Week 3:
    Saturday: Leftovers
    Sunday: BBQ Chicken, Baked Beans, Salad
    Monday: Pasta Salad, French Dips (crockpot the meal)
    Tuesday: Roast Beef Sandwiches, Leftover pasta salad
    Wednesday: Spaghetti, Broccoli, Garlic Toast
    Thursday: Leftovers
    Friday: Sloppy Joes, veggies

    I will be posting this menu plan along with the recipes on my blog http:/cmerie.blogspot.com

    Hope this helps!

  • Larae

    Love these! Danielle, could you also post a link to the recipes from the “Your Turn” mentioned in the initial post? Thank you!

  • Midwest Mom

    We’ll often have tuna salad or egg salad on crackers or bread. I also will sometimes assemble a 2 foot long sub sandwich, which is essentially the same old lunch meat with iceberg lettuce & tomato, but on a really long loaf of bread. It’s amazing how the presentation makes a difference!

    Another summer favorite are BLT’s. I’ll cook the bacon in the morning and leave in the fridge until dinner. At least once a summer we have ice cream for dinner (a highlight of the summer). Another idea – my MIL serves all you can eat corn on the cob and often makes nachos (chips placed in microwave to melt some cheese, served with refried beans, sour cream etc.) And, my kid’s absolute favorite is to munch on veggies while each cutting a fruit (or 2) for a HUGE fruit salad as the main course with a side of cheese.

  • Annie

    I love to make Shrimp Ceviche. It has great summer flavor and is very refreshing. Basically, you grab a large bowl and add the following: two bags raw, deveined shrimp (tails removed and chopped into thirds), 15 limes, a little salt, red pepper (diced), red onion (diced), cucumber (peeled & diced), and chopped fresh cilantro. Cover the bowl and leave in the fridge overnight. The lime will cook the shrimp, and you’ll have an easy meal for lunch or dinner ready to go. You could eat it on its own or put into taco shells with a little bit of tabasco sauce. This dish is a hit, both with my husband and kids, and at parties.

  • Theresia

    Banana splits for supper! fruit, dairy, some nuts and mega calories but everyone but me in this family is skinny!! 😉

    toss frozen roast in crock pot and add ingredients to make up a barbecue sauce and cook. serve on buns or rice.

    Good way to use up the deli meat and cheese – buy a round loaf of the Hawaiin sweet bread, cut off the top, layer whatever meat and cheese, melt, top with lettuce or whatever, put ‘lid’ of bread back on and cut into slices. – great to take to baseball games too – heated or not!

    cold cereal

    a salad bar (reminds me I should head out to the garden to pick spinach and lettuce – but I dread cleaning it….)

  • Tina

    We do lots of cold soups.

    I know, I know, I’m crazy for trying to get little kids to eat COLD soup, when they’ll barely eat HOT soup.

    Here is one of our favourites:
    2-3 cucumbers, peeled and seeded and chopped
    1 garlic clove
    about 2 cups buttermilk.

    (You can increase this to accommodate more people, basically you want to put the cucumber in the blender and enough liquid to barely cover the pieces.)

    Puree the above until smooth. You can also substitute cold chicken stock or yogurt and milk for the buttermilk. You can also add a bit of sour cream or plain cream to make it a bit smoother on the palate.

    Allow to chill in fridge.

    While soup is chilling, chop and place in small bowls any combination of the following:
    red peppers
    green onions
    cold ham
    cold chicken
    more cucumbers
    pickled beets
    cold boiled eggs
    shredded cheese, preferably a nice sharp cheese.
    etc etc, just whatever you have on hand that you think might be nice.

    Serve with bread, crackers or pita. Allow everyone to ‘decorate’ their soup as they like.

  • Theresia

    Annie- 15 limes? whole? sliced or what? Got some shrimp in my freezer actually but wow. 15 limes around here right now would be more $$ than the shrimp!! 😉 I love all the seasonings that this recipe calls for though.

  • Christina

    Whether it is hot or not, I use my crock pot almost every night, even for lasagna:)

    I take 2-3 days every two months and prepare meals for the freezer: raw marinated chicken breasts, enchiladas w/the meat cooked but not baked, very simple chicken casserole, lasagnas that are frozen in a small glass container that i can sit inside the crock pot (we don’t have a big family yet), stuffed shells, bowtie pasta w/ meat sauce, meatloaf, etc…. I rarely actually cook a meal at dinner time. I thaw them out in the fridge and throw them in the crock pot. It doesn’t warm the kitchen up at all. I also use a rice cooker for rice and veggies.

  • Jennifer

    When it gets really hot and I am too tired to cook, we go out to dinner or we order pizza.

  • Dani

    I’m so glad to see this post! I’m getting great ideas! I do a lot of cold pasta salads. Then you can cook up the noodles one morning (I cook a double batch at once so I have cold noodles on hand to make 2 salads for the week) and assemble at leisure.

    Chicken/sundried tomato:
    coat cold pasta noodles with some good olive oil, throw in a couple cloves of chopped garlic, a few chopped sundried tomatoes, cold chicken (leftover from another grill night or pulled from the freezer), some parm cheese, fresh parsley or basil, whichever is handy, and some pine nuts (cashews, walnuts, or pecans work, too.) Very tasty. I like a little heat in mine, so I add a little red pepper flakes separately to my bowl.

    Sesame peanut noodles:
    works best with spaghetti or linguine noodles, but I’ve done it with every shape…
    In a blender:
    3 T sesame oil
    1 inch fresh ginger, chopped (sometimes I use 1/2-1 tsp dried)
    3 garlic cloves
    1 t chili paste (I usually leave out b/c of kids, then add to my own bowl.)
    2-3 T b. sugar, depending on taste
    1/2 c peanut butter
    3 T soy sauce
    3 T rice or apple cider vinegar
    1/4-1/2 c hot water (depends on how thick you like it and how thick your p. butter is.)

    pour over chilled noodles and add whatever strikes your fancy. Usually, I add cucumbers, green onions, some sesame seeds, sliced carrots, cabbage, and either chicken or tofu. Picky eaters remove what they don’t like, but everyone likes the p. butter sauce!

  • Red

    My favorite crockpot soup…

    Layer everything in order:

    4 frozen (still frozen) chicken breasts
    packet of dry ranch dressing mix
    packet of taco seasoning
    can of white kidney beans
    can of red kidney beans
    can of vegetarian beans
    can of mexican corn (with the peppers in it)
    can of tomatoes and green chiles
    small jar of salsa

    Cook on low all day or on high for 3-4 hours.
    Stir everything up. Chicken usually shreds itself when you stir, but if not, shred it a bit.

    I serve this topped with sour cream & cheese. Add some corn muffins and a salad.

  • Heidi

    Tuna & black bean salad–everyone in my house, especially the kids!–love this: mix up drained tuna, rinsed/drained black beans, chopped red pepper, and crumbled feta cheese. If you like, chop up some scallions as well.

    Mix it all together with your favorite Italian dressing. We actually like Ken’s Greek–a little more feta thrown in there. Eat it as is, or put it in pita pockets, or scoop some out on a bed of lettuce. For that matter, you could throw in some cooked pasta as well, but I love it without–absolutely NO cooking whatsoever. Also keeps well in the fridge for leftovers.

  • We like your summer solutions, too, Danielle, and do the chicken horse doovers about once a week when it’s hot. We also have a popcorn, cheese, and apples night about once a week with a movie ~ also a big hit.

  • ?

    Lisa…by “horse doovers” do you mean “Hors D’ouvres” ?

  • Maurisa

    My kids love kielbasa or polish sausage cooked in bbq sauce in the crockpot. Since the sausage is already cooked/smoked it doesn’t take too long–just a couple hours to heat through. We sometimes will make it with a jar of sauerkraut and some small halved potatoes instead of bbq sauce.

  • Annie


    I live in Florida, so limes are pretty inexpensive. I guess I take that for granted! The recipe makes a lot of ceviche. You could easily halve the recipe, using 6-7 limes and one bag of shrimp. Remember that the limes are necessary to cook the shrimp. Just make sure the shrimp is covered in lime juice.

  • Joan

    This is what I do during the school year when I am busy and always have meetings etc to attend.
    Grill a bunch of boneless chicken breasts on Sunday. Use them during the week for salad, or a quick stir fry.
    Make an extra meat loaf or extra big roast and serve that during the week also.
    Make a whole lot of taco meat at once and put it in zip lock bags to take out during the week.
    Make extra spaghetti sauce and put it in containers in the freezer to take out for a quick meal.
    Of course, when heating leftovers use the microwave to avoid heating the house.

    All of these ideas can be applied to hot weather except the spaghetti sauce. We eat a lot of salad in our household. In fact most of our dinners are protein and salad, especially me, the gluten free girl.

    Also, make a potatoe salad with olive oil and balsamic vinegar, and a bit of basil and chives. It keeps well for a few days and can be used on a hot day so you don’t have to cook.

    Make pasta and peas with sauteed onions and garlic in the morning, and serve that for dinner. Let it sit out for a bit before serving. Easy and the kids love it.

  • Teresa G.

    Cold cereal is truly a staple on those hot nights for us. Well, okay, we have the air conditioning on when it’s really hot….so I guess the cold cereal is for those lazy nights when we just want to go to the pool, watch a movie, etc. and need to eat quickly.

    We also do yogurt, popcorn, fruit, and milk. I can get away with these easy meals because my husband works some evening shifts and the kids don’t usually care what we eat; they actually love cereal for dinner. I do try to cook something nice when he’s worked all day….thanks for all the great ideas here!

  • Leslie

    To take a break from routine sandwiches we make summer sausage, cheese and cracker sandwiches. Sides can include other healthy snacks like almonds, dried fruit and granola.

  • There are lots of responses, so I may be repeating ideas here.

    But one of the roasted chickens at the grocery store (usually under 5 dollars here). Shred the chicken and add it to a bag of salad. I have a recipe for a broccoli salad from Kraft Food and Family that is just broccoli, red onions, bacon, and slivered almonds tossed in a vinegar/may/sugar dressing. Adding chicken to it makes it heartier.

    I use my crockpot a lot too, since it doesn’t heat up the whole house. I use leftover taco chicken (chicken breasts with taco mix and salsa cooked all day in the crockpot) to make taco salad. Bag of romaine, taco chicken, tortilla chips, corn and black beans tossed in a salsa/ranch dressing mix. Delicious, the kids even eat it.

  • Rose

    Dips can be a meal:

    1 jar “Kraft Three Cheese Ranch Drsg. & Dip”
    Dip with Baby Carrots (addicting!)
    Dip with Red Grapes(use a toothpick)
    Zucchini, raw, sliced
    Portabella Mushrooms
    Cucumber Slices
    Cherry Tomatoes(use a toothpick)
    Apple slices
    Any favorite cracker, I like Triscuits(original)-Has unusual flavor with this.
    1 jar”Marzetti’s Sweet & Sour Drsg.”
    Broccoli florets(microwave for 2-3 min.)
    Portabella Mushrooms
    Brussels Sprouts(very unusual taste-good)(microwave for 3-4min)
    Hard boiled eggs(cut in half-drsg.on top)
    Tastes like a deviled egg. No more-all that work.
    Red Grapes(use a toothpick)
    Cherry Tomatoes(use a toothpick)
    Cucumber slices
    With any fish or seafood-cooked or canned. I use in sandwiches too with these. With mackerel it is very unusual.

    Keep these in a wide mouth jar in refrig. for snacking. Watch out the carrots are very very addicting. These make a wonderful lunch, and can be filling. The kids will have fun dipping their favorite foods-like at a party. Experiment too. That is how I arrived at these, and I have just started.
    Lee’s(a friend) Marinated Carrots:
    Two 14oz cans of sliced carrots, drained
    1/2 cup onions, chopped
    1/2 cup green peppers, chopped
    1 cup of sugar
    1 tsp salt
    1/4 cup vinegar
    1 tsp mustard
    1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
    1 can tomato soup (Healthy Request is what I use.)

    Drain carrots.
    Mix remaining ingredients with the can of tomato soup until sugar is dissolved.
    Then add drained carrots.
    Make ahead so carrots can blend. Usually 24 hours in Refrig. It takes this long to blend the flavors-very important.
    Serve cold in a bowl.
    This is addicting too. A good take-along-dish for gatherings because it is cold and unusual.

  • Larae

    Thank you for updating the post with the link to the original thread.
    Love your site.
    All the best!

  • Michelle in MO

    Here is a GREAT microwave and grill recipe a friend shared with me 😉

    Cajun Pork and Orzo

    1 can (14 oz) chicken broth
    1 cup orzo (rosamarina) pasta
    1/2 tsp dried thyme
    1 tsp Cajun/Creole seasoning, divided
    4 boneless pork loin chops (about 1 lb)
    1 TBS olive oil
    2 cloves garlic, minced
    1 medium onion, cut into wedges, leaving root intact
    1 green or red bell pepper, quartered
    2 large carrots, halved lengthwise
    1 large tomato, chopped
    Freshly ground black pepper

    In 2-quart microwave-safe casserole dish, combine broth, orzo, thyme, and 1/2 tsp Cajun seasoning. Microwave on high for 12-14 minutes, stirring halfway through cooking time, until orzo is tender and broth is absorbed. Season pork chops with remaining 1/2 tsp seasoning.

    In small bowl, combine oil and garlic; brush over onion, bell pepper, and carrots. Place pork and vegetables on grid over medium-high heat. Cover and grill, turning halfway through cooking time, until internal temperature is 155 degrees and vegetables are tender (about 10-12 minutes).

    Cut vegetables into bite-sized pieces; toss with cooked orzo and tomato. Serve with pork chops.

    Makes 4 servings

  • Larae

    Summer Meals
    Sometimes it is not what you serve but what you call it that counts. Here are my top 25 summer lunches but they could be used for dinner as well. All without heating up the oven. Hope you like ‘em.
    Many of these I got from Family Fun and tried to note that. Some we have been making and adapting for so long, I am not sure where they are from.

    1. Pouch Salad: Slice pita pockets open with a pizza cutter (older kid job). Stuff with what is on hand: lettuce, bacon bits, shredded cheese, sprouts, celery curls, carrot shreds, halved cherry tomatoes, etc. Put ranch dressing in a small container to dip pocket into or drizzle ranch over the top.
    2. Hot Turkey!: Turkey and Pepper Jack sandwich grilled on the stove until golden brown.
    3. Silly Pizzas: Slice open a English muffin or a pita into a circle shape. Add pizza sauce and grated cheese over all and then mushrooms, broccoli, pepperoni, and other pizza toppings to make faces. Bake on a cookie sheet at 350 for 7 minutes or until cheese is golden. Listen to “Silly Pizza” song from Signing Time. (from SigningTime.com) ON hot days we eat these without baking them. It is ok as long as all of the toppings are able to be eaten raw or are precooked.
    4. I See Stars: This is a peanut butter and whatever (banana, jam, honey, strawberry sandwich) but here is the kick… make it out of one slice wheat and one slice white. Cut out a shape with a star cookie cutter from the middle of the sandwich and flip it around so you have white stars on a wheat background. (from Family Fun)
    5. Breakfast burritos: Tortilla with scrambled eggs, salsa, cheese and pinto beans. (idea from McD’s)
    6. Curly noodle Soup: Chicken Noodle Soup made with Ramen Noodles.
    7. Octopus and Seaweed: Hot dog (microwave it with a wet paper towel around it) with the lower half of the hot dog shaped like eight legs over leftover cold spinach fettuccini or spaghetti noodles. (I think this idea is from http://www.FamilyFun.com See the site as I am not able to explain it that well.)
    8. Little Dippers: Just put out a bunch of veggies, fruits, and cubed leftover meat with a few kinds of dip. Guacamole. Salsa. Cinnamon Dip: a cup of plain yogurt, a dash of cinnamon, and a half teaspoon of vanilla extract. Mix and serve. PB Dip: ½ cup peanut butter, 1 tsp. honey, a smidge of cayenne pepper. Mix and serve.
    9. Quicky Chicky: Boneless skinless chicken cut into cubes, 2 tsp. paprika, ½ tsp. salt, ½ cup flour, ¼ cup sesame seeds, black pepper, garlic salt, 1 cup oil. Shake chicken cubes in a sealed bag with the seasonings. Then fry in oil until golden. Drain well on paper towels. These can be stored in fridge for four days or freezer for three months. We eat them hot or cold. Or use leftover precooked chicken from the night before ad omit the flour and the frying. This one maybe from Family Fun too.
    10. S.E.T.H.’s Lunch (Skewer Everything That (we) Have): Just whatever you have on hand on a skewer. Lots of times we have this the day after we have garlic shrimp and steamed broccoli for dinner.
    11. Cut It Out: This is for the day after we have pasta for dinner and most kiddos are able to do this themselves. Use small cookie cutters to cut shapes out of sliced cucumbers, sliced mozzarella cheese and a plastic knife to cut cherry tomatoes into two. Add the shapes to cooked and chilled leftover pasta noodles. Add Italian dressing to the top or leftover marina sauce.
    12. G.A.B.E. Potatoes (Go And Burn Everything): Basically hash or fried potatoes and leftover ground beef. The name comes from Gabe liking his very well done.
    13. Covered Moss Sandwiches: An open faced grilled cheese with broccoli, carrot shreds or green beans stashed under the cheese.
    14. Let’s Wrap: Tortilla or flat bread spread with sour cream. Sprinkle ranch dressing mix over the sour cream. Then add a layer of deli roast beef or very thinly cut leftovers. Add lettuce, carrot shreds, and sprouts. Wrap it up!
    15. Sailboat Sandwiches: In a roll cut with a large ‘V’ shaped wedge at the top – like Subway used to do – stuff with “salad” mix. We use shrimp salad but tuna, egg or chicken salad works too. Then slice a piece of cheese diagonally. Put the cheese sticking straight up on top of the roll so that the cheese looks like sails. (from Family Fun)
    16. Inside Outs: Take a piece of bread and flatten it (kid job). Place flattened cheese on top of a slice of cheese, then lettuce and then add a piece of meat on top. Messy but the kiddos think it is funny to eat the bread on the inside of a sandwich.
    17. Quesadillas: Two tortillas with cheese and leftover Chicken Enchilada inside grilled on the stove or in a pan on the grill until crispy and cheese melted.
    18. Chinese Fried Rice:
    19. PB and J Pizza: Whole wheat pita with jelly as the pizza sauce and small dollops of peanut butter placed around as if it were a topping. Also add sliced bananas and strawberries.
    20. Macaroni and Cheese with Peas: Cooked noodles with cheddar cheese mixed in and peas sprinkled on the top.
    21. UFOs: from Family Fun. Spread cream cheese or peanut butter around the bagel and add a half bagel with a hard boiled egg in the hole. You can add raisins, carrot curls, bananas, or whatever on top of the cream cheese or peanut butter.
    22. “You’ll Never Get This Again” Soup: Soup for the extra bits of leftover veggies and things that freeze in a tub in the freezer. Thaw in the morning. At 10 add a can of tomato sauce, some cooked ground beef or beef cubes. Simmer until warm about lunch time. Never have the same leftover bits so it never turns out the same twice.
    23. J.O.S.I.A.H.’s Lunch (Just Omelets Scrambled In A Hurry).
    24. I.S.A.A.C.’s Lunch – It’s Shaped As A Circle: Ritz crackers with lunch meat and cheese in the shape of a circle the same size as the cracker.
    25. Lettuce Wrap: A deli meat and cheese sandwich but instead of bread wrap it up in a large Iceberg Lettuce leaf.

  • Larae

    Oops! #16 should read put the flattened bread on top of a slice of cheese…. sorry!

  • heather

    I am a military wife who spent a couple of years on the island of Guam. Guam is such an interesting and Catholic place! Tons of culture and history there and a great unit study for homeschooling! There they eat something called Kelaguen — which is sooo yummy and easy! It can be eaten with a fork, rolled up in a tortilla, with crackers, scooped on top of a salad, etc. Kentucy Fried Chicken on the island actually serves Chicken Kelaguen wraps. 🙂 You can use leftover rostissere chicken, cooked (or raw)shrimp, canned or fresh crab meat, imitation crabmeat, even very thinly sliced raw flank steak (the lemon juice cooks the meat as it marinates). It is versatile, and no cooking is involved! Just try it, you may love it!

    1 pound of your choice of meat, finely chopped
    1 half to 1 cup finely grated coconut (try to find the UNsweetened kind, at a helath food store maybe) You can omit if you don’t like, but it won’t be as yummy! 🙂
    2 teaspoon Fresh green onion, finely chopped (I like more!)
    5 teaspoon Lemon juice
    4 small Chili peppers (omit for those who don’t like spice)
    1 teaspoon Salt
    Pepper to taste

    Mix all together, cover and store in fridge at least overnight to give it time to “cook” and get happy together! 🙂 It is yummy! The trick is to chop everything really finely. Leftover smoked or grilled chicken or pork is also yummy! This is served at every fiesta meal in Guam. Serve it with finnadene sauce (optional).
    Finadene (Guam All-Purpose Sauce):
    1 medium onion, sliced or chopped
    1 green onions, chopped
    1/2 cup soy sauce
    1/4 cup vinegar or lemon juice
    3-6 hot peppers, chopped or crushed
    Combine all ingredients in a small bowl and stir. Add more soy sauce, vinegar or lemon juice until you obtained the desired taste.

  • […] it as an option. One of the foundations of Chamorro cooking is a sauce called a finadene sauce, and it is ubiquitous on the island of Guam. Finadene is so popular that even the local Kentucky Fried Chicken serves it […]

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